Too many folks suffer from a lack of joy. There is hope. It resides in learning to delight, learning in what to delight, and then letting that delight guide your living - thus delight-directed living.
Have you noticed how many people look sad or unhappy? Most of us experience unhappiness from time to time. Many of us have experienced depression that seems unshakeable. Though these may be conditions natural to human living, we need not let them define us, and we can reduce the length of even that unshakeable depression when it visits if we can grasp the concept of delight. We can cultivate a joyful heart which can then undergird us even when sadness is the emotion of the day.
Those suffering from a dejected countenance are innumerable. Always chasing that elusive happiness, they grab hold of it for moments; then, like dry sand, it sifts through their fingers, and they return to groping after it. Where is joy? It is easy to confuse happiness with joy, but they are very different. Joy is deeper. Happiness comes and goes, while joy abides in the one who possesses it. It is there whether happiness remains or not. It is imbedded in the being of the person as well as the experience and grows like fruit. It is, in fact, a fruit of the spirit.
But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; Galatians 5:22-23(NASB)
Happiness, then is more emotional, more soulish, if you will, while joy flows from the very spirit of a person. And what does this have to do with delight?
Delight, both a noun and a verb is an output of our joy, a link to what makes us happy, as well as an active pursuing of good pleasure. I say ‘good pleasure’ because there are many things which might be pleasurable, which might give us momentary happiness, that will not necessarily delight and will ultimately lead to that same sifting sand or, worse, destruction. However, delight, rightly placed, rightly activated, will deepen joy, satisfy, and bless the one who bears it and those with whom they come in contact.
Delight embodies a pursuit of truth, of light as in ‘de’ light. Think about someone you know who just brightens the room they enter. They light up the place. What is it about them that gives you that sense? Is it not the concept of delight? The whole idea of delight makes one want to look up to the light. Delight lifts our spirits, gives us energy, points us up and forward much like sunlight does.
Psalm 37:4 says, “Delight yourself in the LORD; And He will give you the desires of your heart.”
I have learned much from meditating on this verse, and I have been given much much more than I can even begin to put into words. When the source, direction, and guiding force of your delight is the Lord, you are beginning and ending with the Author and Finisher of life itself, the omnipotent, omnipresent, omniscient Being Who loves and is Love and wants you to know His pleasure, pure and magnificent. That is pretty powerful stuff. Wrap your mind around that - I don’t think so, but oh the delight in trying.
As I pursue a delight-directed life, I hope I can bring as many people along with me on the adventure and help others to brighten up lives and rooms of their own.
Be blessed! Maria